tv [untitled] May 5, 2011 10:30am-11:00am PDT
supervisor mirkarimi: good morning. welcome to the public safety committee meeting. i am ross mirkarimi. to my left is supervisor david campos. we expect supervisor coehn will be joining us later. thank you, sfgtv, for your excellence in covering committee hearings. madam clerk, would you please read the first item? >> item 1. resolution authorizing the department of emergency management to retroactively
accept and expend a homeland security grant program grant in the amount of $2,094,667 from the united states department of homeland security, through the california emergency management agency, for disaster planning. supervisor mirkarimi: good morning. >> good morning. i am with the department of emergency management. i'm joined by our emergency services manager, who i am very pleased to introduce to you. we are pleased to have him working in our department. the grant is a $2 million grant for department of homeland security. we have two pieces. there is the stay at home security grant program and medical response. this is basically the bread-and- butter grant for disaster planning for the city and county of san francisco. we get into every year. there are six projects supported in this. you may have seen them as projects a, b, c, d, e, and f.
there is general preparedness, strengthening communications, chemical biological nuclear explosives, things like that. the four basic things that are funded are the bread and butter for emergency planning in the city. it is equipment, training, exercises, planning, and a couple of things i want to point out to you that are funded are several of our planning positions that we think do great work for the city. we have a business liaison who does business in downtown in san francisco with the small business community to get them prepared and offer us resources. two years ago, we had a disaster veterinary planner. a lot of people will not leave their homes if they cannot take their pets with them. that causes a danger to them and animals. this is provided free to us by the government. they financed it.
we are doing post-disaster resilience planning in san francisco led by the office. that is what we do three years, three months down the road to get the city back on its feet. this is the basic overall planning grant. it is not just for emergency management. it provides funding for the city. there's money for the sheriff's department. i would be happy to answer any questions you may have. there was no sitting match required for this grant and we are not creating new positions. this is ongoing funding for what we do. supervisor mirkarimi: i'm familiar with this grant. year to year, we go through this. it makes complete sense. no questions. comments? thank you very much. any public comment? welcome. any public comment on this item?
>> and good morning. i have lived in san francisco for 59 years. i would like to speak out in support of this item. my public comment deals with treasure island. i was wondering if any of this money would be earmarked for the future protection of treasure island, since it seems that the city is spending so much resources developing the island. it seems like another concern i have is whether any of the money can be allocated to department of public health so they can expand their programs that deal with disasters, since almost every disaster somehow involves the department of public health. i was wondering if any of this money could be allocated for the department of public health, especially in regards with dealing with senior citizens or just basically people who are
injured in whatever disaster that happens. i would like to pose those two questions. hopefully, some of the money could be allocated to those two areas. thank you. supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. public comment is closed. supervisor campos? supervisor campos: thank you. good morning. thank you for the presentation. make a motion to move this item forward with the resolution. supervisor mirkarimi: let's do this. before we move this forward with recommendation, maybe we could answer that question. >> i would be glad to. thank you very much for the question. i will take the second part first. vulnerable populations, seniors, disabled, one of the things funded in this grant is a vulnerable preparation planner. there is a lot of work making sure the shelters we plan for our 88 accessible and we are doing outreach -- are ada
accessible and we're doing outreach to make sure we can identify where a vulnerable population is living, who were they, how do we reach out to them. we have a planner devoted to that. we are proud of that. in terms of san francisco, we do work with neighborhood organizations. some of that funding is in this grant. treasure island is one of the neighborhood certainly included in that. training and exercises are funded in this grant. the fire department has one of their facilities at treasure island. some activities they do their support the city and the island, and that is funded by this grant. supervisor mirkarimi: very good. thank you. there has been a motion. seconded and so moved with recommendation. item number two, please? >> item two. resolution authorizing the office of the chief medical examiner to accept and expend a grant in the amount of $116,589 from the paul coverdell
forensic science improvement grants program of the california emergency management association for accreditation support. supervisor mirkarimi: welcome. >> good morning. i'm joan from the office of the city administrator. we also have dr. hart, the chief medical examiner. this grant is from the california emergency management association. we are grateful to be receiving it. the office of the medical resent -- examiner must be accredited under the board of forensic toxicology. this grant will allow equipment to be bought and training to be given to staff. happy to answer questions. supervisor mirkarimi: i think this is very straightforward. i want to throw a question to you relate it to the previous item we passed forward with recommendations. the monies that we actually accept from homeland security,
when they were talking about law enforcement and preparing for those, man-made or natural disasters, is that a segue into the medical examiner's office as well? >> i wouldn't know. the doctor can answer that question. supervisor mirkarimi: good to see. >> in the heart, chief medical examiner. the question about do we receive some of the funding that is available for natural preparedness, the answer is yes. the medical examiner's office participate in training exercises. one thing we recently participated in was from the department of emergency management. we have a person under grant with them who came in to revise our mass fatality plan, to put it in compliance with regional requirements for the plan.
that was recently completed. they made a -- they're going to make a presentation to our department this afternoon. it came from grant funding. we fully participate in that region participate in everything we can for emergency prepare -- we fully participate in everything we can for emergency preparedness. we want to be up to national standards. supervisor mirkarimi: across my mind. i was looking at item number one. i wanted to ask that question. thank you very much. is there any public comment on this item? public comment is closed. supervisor campos? supervisor campos: thank you. i move we move forward with the recommendation. supervisor mirkarimi: so moved. >> item 3.
ordinance amending the san francisco environment code by adding sections 2250 through 2254, to require any business selling prescription drugs to the public to post display materials explaining how to safely and lawfully dispose of unused prescription drugs. supervisor mirkarimi: i want to think the city of san francisco and the mayor's office for working closely with my office in helping build what was an attempt last year when i introduced legislation to require pharmaceutical companies, drug companies, to provide for infrastructure that allows the citizenry -- citizenry of san francisco to dispose of their prescription and on wanted medications in a way that would be safe and one that would comport with our public safety and health and
welfare standards. this legislation was met with significant opposition because it would be a mandate by the industry, but what it did catalyze was an interesting body of negotiation with industry representatives and government officials. this stems from the fact that there are a number of states in the united states where we have borrowed the concept of applying this law locally that of contempt -- that have attempted to compel similar results. that is in the state legislatures in the united states. they also wanted to see a very similar infrastructure create. in every one of those states, those efforts were beaten back and failed due to the aggressive lobbying efforts of the pharmaceutical industry and others. we believe that that was no reason to retreat from what we think is a very sensible idea, one that has been well-promoted by the department of and garment, but promoted in the
city and county of san francisco at our own expense. this is where i take great issue. i think there should be some proper corporate social responsibility in helping cities to be able to determine a shared system of how we discard these unwanted medication so they do not get into the wrong hands or get into our water systems, so we all can rest comfortably that the adverse affects of the tonnage that is disposed of each year in san francisco does not detrimentally affect the kind of help stream that we want to make sure is protected. this legislation is aimed at addressing the problems of drugs contaminating our water system, including the bay, and waste water treatment plant, which are not designed to filter these contaminants out.
the need for this program was further shown by a 2003 pilot program in which the department of environment and our public utilities commission partnered with walgreen's to collect 1,130 pounds of drugs in two days. that came at a high cost at the city's expense, ultimately at taxpayer expense, but one that we have to shoulder. before a final vote was taken, the pharmaceutical industry's said earlier, primarily pharma and genetech, generously offered $110,000 for san francisco to run a pilot program for 18 months, which is now before the city government. the mayor's office and department of environment have done work on that program and will provide information about it today that would create a drop-off opportunity at police department locations. district stations and some
pharmacies, also. to make sure everyone has an effective hand in making sure this pilot works well, i introduced subsequently to the legislation last year that -- the opportunity of making sure that displays are created in drug stores so that people know where they can safely and lawfully dispose of unused prescription drugs. it is one of the key components of the pilot program that we continue after the pilot, based largely on outreach. the whole point of this is to make sure the citizenry of san francisco is as informed as possible. what is before us today is legislation that creates what the protocol should be forced linage -- for signage in retail outlets that sell pharmaceuticals. my understanding from the department of environment and
mayors' offices the pilot program would be delayed by two months, approximately. isolated initial implementation for july. due to staffing changes and resource challenges i am hearing from the mayor's office, they would like to start around september. this legislation was also timed around that same clock, for july implementation. i would be more than happy to amend our expectations so that it starts when the pilot program starts as well, if that is what is needed. i would love to hear from the mayor's office and the department of the environment so we can talk about the legislation specifically and us moving this concept for. please. -- concept forward. please. >> thank you, the chair mirkarimi, supervisor campos, for the opportunity to speak. the mayor does support this legislation.
i want to state that. as you mentioned, we have been working on a pilot. it has been a good stakeholder effort working with the corporate side, but also with the department, department of environment, puc, and the police department, and the mayor's office, to really look at how we work to create a program that works best for the city safely. so, department of environment can give a little bit of an update on where we are as far as specific surround the pilot program, if you would like. i think the importance of this legislation is, if we are making the effort to do a volunteer pilot program, let's make sure we have a comprehensive outreach strategy. how do we educate consumers about where they have an option to dispose of pharmaceuticals? it must be done in a safe and legal way at no cost to them.
this legislation is taking that step. i will invite up the department of environment to give more details and to talk about the process of how they create the materials that would go into these locations. supervisor mirkarimi: i just want to make sure that -- i spoke of length about this with the mayor as mayor lee was coming into office. we were discussing the concept of the pilot as opposed to pursuing this with legislation. we found common ground. on legislation, the mayor told me he was supportive of the signage displays. correct? >> that is correct. it is about looking at a voluntary program. it is very important to have education and at point of sales. department of environment can speak to that further. that is where people buy their products.
it makes sense that we showed them the opportunity of where they can dispose of products. supervisor mirkarimi: thank you. appreciate it. department of environment, please? >> i am from the department of environment and i am here to shore support for this ordinance. i want to share with you our experience and plans for the pilot and demonstrate how that ties into this ordinance. as you noted, the ordinance that you brought forward last year did result in genetech providing $110,000 to our department to create a pilot program that will last about 18 months. we are in process of developing that. we have more than one dozen independent pharmacies that will serve as collection points. that is a great start for our first citywide collection program. a large portion of these funds
will be used for outreach and education. we know from experience that the valuable outreaches in-store or at the point of sale. 90%, the first place they go to find out how to dispose of something as the place they purchased it. in this case, pharmacies. it is key that point of purchase be the primary component of our outreach, just as in-core pharmacy collection is the primary location for returning drugs. i want to show a few examples to demonstrate our experience in the past to do in-story collection. you mentioned the program we did in 2006. for a weekend, we did collection at 13 walgreen's. we were not able to continue that program. we were not able to sustain funding.
walgreen's worked with us to develop an outreach piece to distribute to people coming in after that collection period so they would have information on how to properly dispose of pharmaceuticals. this is an example of a point purchase. this is a tear-off pad at the counter. "how do i get rid of my pharmaceuticals?" this is what they would give them. at the time, we had a facility. i want to show you an example of how pharmacies have worked with us in the past to develop something and distributed at their store. a more recent example was a poster we developed. they did permanent collection for some time. supervisor mirkarimi: a little bit of a player. >> i can also hold up.
it is a small poster that goes in the window to demonstrate that they would be a collection point. we envision something similar. this will go through a public process. we will hold hearings at our office and get public input from affected retailers to develop something they will be happy with. it will not be a problem to develop something. supervisor mirkarimi: san mateo as a vibrant take-back program, but it is at a cost to the county. it is important for the pop republic to see what those depositories look like. -- important for the public to see what those depositories look like. do you have that on hand? >> these are three different examples. supervisor mirkarimi: that is fine. it is almost like a red cross mailbox. >> they come in different sizes. we tend to have small stores.
we will have them make custom to fit in the stores. these are few examples. san mateo on the left. supervisor mirkarimi: let me ask you something. where we are talking about citing these repositories for people to discard, five police stations, a number of independent pharmacies, are any of these being cited that the big-chain pharmacies? >> we have had great dialogue with you in the mayor's office, with industry, and other representatives of larger chains, including walgreen's. at this time, they are not comfortable participating. we hope that after we are able to demonstrate -- we will provide guidelines for how to do this. we will demonstrate it is successful and hopefully they will do it in the future. supervisor mirkarimi: isn't it
safe to say that a lot of medications are generated from safeway and walgreen's? >> we know because we partner with walgreen's on battery collection there are more than 60 walgreen stores and half a dozen safeways. that is where a lot of drugs are being sold. supervisor mirkarimi: i saw that it was well over 50% generated by consumers from the aggregate amount of those retail counters in san francisco. correct? >> that sounds reasonable. supervisor mirkarimi: ok. i am going off into data. >> ok. supervisor mirkarimi: them on the signage itself, explain how it would work as it is related to our legislation and what our expectation would be of it.
>> we would like it to be -- supervisor mirkarimi: this is very specific. >> we wanted to be identical for what we're doing for the pilot. we envision a small poster or a tear-off pad available in the window of the store so people walking by can see it, and then in the pharmacy itself. people walk up directly to ask about it. supervisor mirkarimi: i have had a little bit of experience with this. i offered the ban on plastic bags. i wanted to see volunteers with the industry, similar stores, walgreen's, to provide signage to dissuade people from using the common plastic bag and you something else. we would find some of that signage buried behind "the national enquirer" or other
magazines. that is my worry here. in a voluntary program, that very well may result in that situation. isn't that a valid concern? >> i think that makes sense. it should be in a prominent location. you allow for a two-month education time for us to go to the stores and insure they have the materials and they are in a prominent location. we will help to make that happen. supervisor mirkarimi: very good. about five years ago, i did signage for prop 65, on mercury poisoning. it was with the help of the department of and burn. i'm not sure if you were part of the department back then yourself. that was also a template we used. it has become commonplace in san francisco. we borrowed from that signage in this legislation of what those
protocols were. i don't know if you would want to speak about this. i want to ensure we are working from a basis of continuity, not something we are lifting out of a hat, in creating a sign that we're asking you to comply with, but without sound rationale. >> i did not work on that specifically. >> this is certainly consistent with past efforts. in a designated location, certainly, we will make sure it is visibly located. supervisor mirkarimi: with regard to the delayed implementation of the program itself, my office received a request that this be amended to december 2011. >> you have an implementation date and then there is a two- month education period for us to go out and help them be in compliance.